What Are The Different Types Of Chilli Sauces

What Are The Different Types Of Chilli Sauces


Chili sauces are a popular condiment used around the world to add flavor and heat to food. They can be hot, mild, or a combination of both, and they come in a variety of different styles and flavors. Chili sauce is made from peppers, spices, tomato paste or other ingredients, such as vinegar or sugar.

There are many different types of chili sauce available on the market today; most countries have their own unique recipes for making and using it.

Common chili sauces include:

  • Mexican salsas such as salsa roja (made from chile peppers) and salsa verde (made from tomatillos), as well as Chinese-style hot mustard and Indonesian sambal oelek.

There are also many unique regional varieties of chili sauce such as:

  • Peruvian Ají Amarillo paste
  • Thai Sriracha sauce
  • Malaysian Sambal Belacan shrimp paste-based dish
  • Korean Gochujang red pepper paste-based dish
  • Vietnamese Tuong Ot Sriracha chili garlic sauce
  • Filipino banana ketchup.

No matter what type of chili sauce you prefer or may be new to trying out – all are renowned for their generous kick of heat, intense flavor and their culinary versatility to practically any dish!

Types of Chili Sauces

There are many different types of chili sauces available on the market. From mild to spicy, there are countless varieties of chili sauces perfect for adding flavour to a variety of dishes.

Some popular chili sauces include:

  • Sambal
  • Tabasco
  • Chili garlic
  • Sriracha

Whether you’re looking to add some heat to your meal or just want to find a new type of sauce to try, this article will help you explore the different types of chili sauces available.

Hot sauces

Hot sauces, also known as chili sauces, are an indispensable condiment for many dishes. There are an array of hot sauces varying in flavor and intensity. Depending on the chili pepper used to make the sauce, the level of spiciness may range from mild to extreme. Hot sauces can be used as marinades, seasonings, and can also be added to food while cooking or at the table.

  • Tabasco sauce: Made with tabasco peppers and vinegar, this is a classic hot sauce with a medium-level of heat that is slightly tangy due to the presence of vinegar.
  • Habanero hot sauce: This type of hot sauce has a deep orange or red color and brings plenty of citrus flavors along with its heat. Habanero peppers have a distinctive fruity flavor that makes them well suited for making hot sauces.
  • Sriracha: This popular Asian hot sauce is made from red jalapeño peppers combined with garlic, sugar and distilled vinegar that gives it a sweet taste along with its signature heat level.
  • Chimichurri: Originating from Argentina and Uruguay, Chimichurri is made from white wine vinegar combined with garlic, parsley, cilantro, oregano and chilies that provides it a unique flavor profile along with its spicy touch.
  • Louisiana style hot sauce: The original Louisiana style hot sauce’s main ingredient is tabasco chilies which give it a medium heat level combined with vinegary notes creating a balance among sweet, tartness and spicy elements making this one perfect for those who enjoy moderately spiced foods.

Tomato-based sauces

Tomato-based chili sauces are the most commonly found on supermarket shelves and in many restaurants. Typically, a blend of tomatoes, garlic, onions, peppers and seasonings are cooked together to create a range of flavours and consistencies. From thick and spicy salsas to tomato-based hot sauces with a vinegary tang, these sauces can add flavour to a variety of dishes. Here are some classic tomato-based chili sauces you may want to try:

  • Chile con carne sauce – A sweet, medium heat sauce with tomatoes, onions, chilli powder and garlic for added flavour.
  • Sambal Olek – An Indonesian condiment made from chillies ground into a paste along with garlic or shallots and spices like coriander.
  • Chipotle Hot Sauce – Made from chipotle peppers that have been smoked before being blended with tomatoes or tomatillos for added sweetness.
  • Roasted Tomato Salsa – Roasted tomatoes combine chilies such as jalapeño or habanero for a smoky flavor paired with sweetness from roasted tomatillos and peppers.
  • Habanero Salsa – Habaneros add the heat here combined with roasted vegetables such as red onion and sweet bell pepper contribute even more layers of flavor to this zesty hot sauce.

Fruit-based sauces

Fruit-based chili sauces have a sweet and fruity taste, often incorporating the flavors of spices, herbs, and sugar. Popular ingredients in these sauces can include: tomatoes, apples, oranges, apricots, peaches, mangoes, plums. Some varieties may also contain vinegar to give them added zest and tanginess. As most fruit-based sauces aren’t particularly hot they are suitable for a range of dishes including salads and marinades as well as more traditional chili dishes. Try adding one of these sweet sauces to grilled chicken or pork for added flavor.

Popular varieties of fruit-based chili sauces include:

  • Mango Chili Sauce
  • Pineapple Chili Sauce
  • Apricot Chili Sauce
  • Orange Chili Sauce
  • Peach Chili Sauce

Mustard-based sauces

Mustard-based chili sauces are made from a base of prepared mustard, vinegar and spices, giving them a recognizable tangy flavor.

Mustard-based sauces range in heat intensity and color based on the types of peppers and seasoning used in their composition. Typically, the sweeter and less spicy varieties will be paler yellow while spicier versions are deep orange or red. Common additives used to amplify heat levels include wasabi, horseradish or mustard powder.

While commonly associated with French’s Mustard or Ballpark Mustard chili sauce, there are many regional brands found throughout various parts of the United States that feature unique ingredients like maple syrup, sesame seeds and garlic scapes. These sauces may typically be served as part of a condiment platter alongside classic styles and Wisconsin Beer & Brat Mustard Chili Sauce for variety.

Vinegar-based sauces

Vinegar-based sauces are made from vinegar, chiles, spices and other flavorings such as garlic, onions and lime juice. These sauces are often thinner than other types of chili sauce. They can range in color from light tan to deep red and in flavor from mild to very hot.

Common vinegar-based chili sauces include Tabasco, Louisiana Hot Sauce and Cholula.

Aside from adding heat to food, vinegar-based sauces usually add a tangy or sour taste that pairs well with many dishes such as barbecue pork or beef brisket sandwiches. These sauces also have a longer shelf life than tomato-based sauces because their acidic properties prevent the growth of bacteria. The acidity of the vinegar also helps cut through fat in foods such as steak or rib recipes with rich gravies or creamy cheese sauces.

Garlic-based sauces

Garlic-based sauces are a staple in any chilli enthusiast’s kitchen, and there are several popular types available. Habanero hot sauce is extremely versatile and can be used to add a real kick of flavor to any dish. It has an intense heat, but also a bit of sweetness found in the habanero peppers that it contains.

Another popular garlic-based chilli sauce is Sichuan pepper sauce, which has a spicy and smoky flavor profile. This sauce often has additional ingredients like garlic, onions, ginger, soy sauce and other spices to increase the intensity of its flavors. Some versions of this type of hot sauce may be very mild while others can be quite scorching!

For those who prefer spicy but with a touch of sweetness as well, sriracha hot sauce may be the perfect choice. The sweet garlic notes come from the use of chili peppers and palm sugar in its recipe along with white vinegar and other spices. Sriracha is at the heart of many Thai dishes and makes for an excellent accompaniment to grilled meats or seafood dishes as well as soups or noodle dishes such as pad thai.

Finally, peri-peri hot sauce is also very popular amongst chilli lovers looking for an intense experience without sacrificing flavor balance. This African-inspired hot sauce combines both sweet and smoky elements thanks to ingredients like garlic, onions, red chili peppers, paprika and lemon juice. While likely not the hottest option available due to its combination of ingredients and special balance between notes of brightness and heat, it remains a classic favorite amongst those who appreciate its amazing flavor complexity!

Other sauces

A variety of other chili sauces exist beyond the tabasco and sambal varieties. These may be homemade or bought from local shops, Asian grocery stores, and Amazon.

  • Chili Garlic Sauce: Extremely versatile, this sauce is made from garlic, chilis, vinegar, sugar, and spices. It is popular in a range of different cuisines across the world.
  • Tomatillo Salsa Verde: This mild to medium spicy salsa is made from tomatillos, jalapeños or serranos peppers, onions, cilantro garlic and salt. Often served as a dip with tortilla chips or as a condiment on tacos or enchiladas.
  • Cholula Hot Sauce: Originating in Mexico using arbol and piquin peppers with other spices including paprika and garlic powder. Great for adding flavor to eggs eggs or burritos without increasing heat levels significantly.
  • Humla Hot Sauce: An Indian hot sauce traditionally made using fresh or dried chilli peppers seasoned with ginger juice, lemon juice and black pepper flakes. Used to make curries more fiery or used as an accompaniment to meals.
  • Gochujang Paste: Korean hot chilli paste made from fermented red chilli peppers mixed with glutinous rice flour for added thickness. Great for marinades not only for meats but also fantastic for veggies such as broccoli/bokchoy/aubergine etc…


In conclusion, there are a number of different types of chilli sauces available. Most sauces differ based on the type of chilli used, the way that they’re prepared and the additional ingredients they contain. As versatile as they are delicious, chilli sauces can add a delicious and unique flavor to a variety of dishes. Be sure to experiment with different types and find which one is your favorite!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: What are the different types of chilli sauces?

A1: There are a variety of chilli sauces available, including tabasco, sriracha, chipotle, harissa, and sambal oelek.

Q2: How are chilli sauces used?

A2: Chilli sauces can be used as condiments, marinades, and ingredients in recipes to add flavor and heat.

Q3: What is the spiciest chilli sauce?

A3: The spiciest chilli sauce is the Carolina Reaper sauce, which has a Scoville rating of over 2 million!

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